The Bible does not state the color of Adam or Eve’s skin. Adam did not
have a “race” as the word “race” only has meaning if there is more than
one skin color or other trait. The concept of race had no meaning until,
through the process of evolution, human beings changed and adapted to
their different environments. Many of the people who have speculated about
Adam’s “race” have had a less than healthy motivation, with a racial
agenda (I am very confident this does not apply to you!).

This leads me to my answer to your second question. Paleontologists are
not able to determine the pigment in the skin of fossilized human remains.
For this reason, it is difficult to make confident statements about the
historical origin of different skin pigments. I believe God can and has
used the natural process of microevolution, which produces relatively
small changes within a species. This process of evolution may be natural,
or perhaps God has his hand in it. I am not sure. It is not possible to
prove one way or the other. In any case, the development of a number of
different genetic traits amongst humans over thousands of years and
hundreds of generations has allowed human beings to successfully adapt to
many different environments. In latitudes in which there is a lot of
sunshine, a lot of skin pigment protects against skin and other cancers.
In latitudes in which there is relatively little sun, a smaller amount of
pigment is helpful in order to cause vitamin D to form. Humans do not
produce their own Vitamin D without the influence of ultraviolet radiation
in natural sunlight. For this reason, over many generations, humans with
darker pigment had a higher survival rate in equatorial latitudes, while
those with less pigment had a higher survival rate in more northerly
latitudes. Although it is difficult to prove such a theory, this is the
natural explanation of races as I see it.

There are a number of speculative and non-biblical theories about God
creating races as some sort of mark of sin. The Book of Mormon is full of
such statements, but the there is absolutely no grounds for such a
teaching in the Bible. The Bible simply does not address the creation of
different races, at least in the sense of different skin color and other

John Oakes, PhD

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